Madonna’s highly critical non-hit 'American Life' played during the gruelling one-hour seating session at Moschino, where Jeremy Scott was set to show his first collection as creative director for the 30-year-old house. In the making of his feast of jolly fun American consumerism, which eventually hit the catwalk, it wouldn’t have hurt Scott to take a step back and listen to the lyrics of that song. ‘I'm just living out the American dream, and I just realised that nothing is what it seems.’
When Franco Moschino established his house in the eighties, it was reactionary fashion – or rather, the reaction against fashion – that captivated him. As social commentary on the escalating consumption of the decade, he invented hyper branding as a sly backhand to the fashion client, using logo to effectively poke fun at the customer. Moschino was never a fun fashion brand. It was never that obvious. The Moschino that Franco created was and should be about politics and subversion, a kind of all-consuming irony. Americans are the best at many things in this world, but they’ve never exactly been known for their great sense of irony.
Perhaps that’s why Scott’s debut at Moschino never really managed to capture this most important essence of the house. After a few editors walked out while waiting for a slew of famously fun-loving pop singers to arrive – Rita Ora thirty minutes late, Katy Perry forty-five – Scott’s celebration of easy bling and fast calories finally saw the light of day. They appeared in pop art-esque prints and in slogans on various nods to Coco Chanel and the Moschino legacy, which looked a bit heavy-handed but allowed Scott to exercise the repeated appropriation that characterises his work.
It was an overload of American waste culture, which seemed to rejoice in disposable consumerism, if indeed the collection had any agenda at all apart from the obvious fun. Needless to say, it went down a storm in the pumped-up room – high, perhaps, on the celebrity attendance – with a ‘Fur real’ slogan fur coat and a series of Spongebob Squarepants prints receiving spontaneous cheers, and models born circa mid-nineties getting a chance to work (or is that ‘werk’?) the best they’d learned from watching eighties show videos on YouTube. True to Scott’s brief but characteristic legacy, it was a super fun show but the sugar shock of the new seemed like empty calories in the sharp world of Moschino.